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Government’s web presence still needs work

Information Commissioner Jan Liebaers says information sharing on Government web sites is not where it’s supposed to be.
In fact according to the Information Commission office’s 2016 website investigation report released this week. Only three percent of the 89 government agencies have updated websites promoting and publishing information as required under the Freedom of Information law. “Three public authorities actually has an up to date disclosure log on their website, so that’s three out of eighty-nine so that’s very, very poor.

The Information Commissioner speaking on the findings of the recently released website investigation report reviewing government agencies web presence and rating them on transparency and dissemination of public information.

“65 percent of public authorities in categories one and two so there is a marked improvement in government between 2011 and 2016,” he explains.

Previously 71 per cent received poor ratings for not being updated or having no information related to FOI. Only the Water Authority and National Archives received excellent rating

“If government wishes to communicate proactively and positively and constructively with the public then certainly they need to pay attention to their websites,” he says.

The Information Commissioner also says that government’s failure to update its website not only goes again international best practice, but brings the issue of compliance into play.

“In fact it’s also an issue of effectiveness and efficiency to actually make that information be known rather than deal with information that maybe repetitious,” he adds.

He says by law each entity is required have a publication scheme and a disclosure log on their sites showing requests and links to the disclosed documents and he hopes this will be done going forward.
You can access the information commissioner’s full report at

About the author

Reshma Ragoonath

Reshma Ragoonath

Reshma Ragoonath is a Trinidadian journalist with 18 years media experience with a strong background in print with her most recent stint at The Cayman Reporter. She has a BA in Mass Communications, as well as, an Associate degree in Journalism and Public Relations.

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